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March 14, 2018

Brazil's 1st Corn Crop 28% Harvested, 2nd Corn Crop 81% Planted

Author: Michael Cordonnier/Soybean & Corn Advisor, Inc.

The full-season corn in Brazil is 28% harvested compared to 36% last year and 37% for the 5-year average. This represents only a 4% advance for the week because Brazilian farmers are putting more emphasis on harvesting their soybeans instead of their corn.

In Conab's March Crop Report, they increased their estimate for the full-season corn crop from last month by 0.4 million tons to 25.1 million, but even with the increase, the full-season corn crop in Brazil is still 5.3 million less than last year.

According to AgRural, the safrinha corn crop is 81% planted compared to 88% last year and 81% average. In Mato Grosso, the safrinha corn is 95% planted compared to 96% last year and 98% average. This represents an advance of 11% for the week. The safrinha corn planting in Mato Grosso would be completed this week and the safrinha corn in the state is rated in good condition due to the ample rainfall the state has received.

In the state of Parana the safrinha corn is approximately 80% planted. In Parana and southern Mato Grosso do Sul, farmers would generally not risk planting their corn past March 15th. With the improved corn price, they might extend the planting a little longer, but even with an extended planting season, there are only 7-10 days left in the planting window.

In Conab's March Crop Report, they reduced their estimate for the safrinha corn crop from last month by 1.1 million tons to 62.1 million, which now puts the crop 5.2 million tons less than last year. I thought the interesting change was that they are now estimating that the safrinha corn acreage will be down 5.9% from last year (-720,000 hectares). In February, they estimated that the safrinha corn acreage would be down 5.6% from last year (-676,000 hectares).

Therefore, in March they estimated the safrinha corn acreage at 11.389 million hectares or 44,000 hectares less than in February. They also reduced their safrinha corn yield estimate by 1.2 bu/ac in the March report from 85.2 bu/ac in February (5,533 kg/ha) to 84.0 bu/ac in March (5,458 kg/ha). For the total 2017/18 Brazilian corn crop, Conab lowered their estimate 0.8 million tons in March to 87.2 million tons.